|Friday, 09 December 2011 15:27|
The epidemic of obesity in the United States is linked to another rapidly emerging, serious disease – diabetes, and physicians at Dreyer Medical Clinic say projections from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Diabetes Association indicate the number of American adults who develop the disease will likely double or triple within the next four decades.
Further escalating the rate of diabetes are the increasing age of the general population and the growing proportion of persons of non-Caucasian origin who are at greater risk of developing the disease.
“Although nothing can be done about an individual’s age or genetic makeup, people can control their lifestyle,” said Dreyer Endocrinologist Adam Stein, M.D. “Improving eating habits, reducing weight, and exercising more frequently can go a long way toward limiting the incidence of diabetes in this country.”
Some 26 million children and adults in the U.S. are currently living with diabetes; another 79 million (one in three adults) have blood glucose (sugar) levels that are higher than normal, putting them in a pre-diabetes state.
Diabetes occurs when the quantity of glucose in the bloodstream becomes too elevated either because the body’s pancreas produces little or no insulin, which is necessary to move the sugar from the blood to the cells where it can be turned into fuel for the body, or because cells do not respond properly to the insulin being produced. Unless diabetes is properly managed, it can lead to such complications as kidney failure, heart disease and stroke, blindness, and amputations of legs and feet.
For people with diabetes or pre-diabetes, an ideal way to begin making the healthy lifestyle changes suggested by Dr. Stein is to maintain a balanced diet. “Carbohydrates, fat, and protein must be balanced to ensure that blood-sugar levels remain as stable as possible,” said Katherine Snyder, R.D., L.D., C.D.E., a registered dietitian at Dreyer’s West Aurora and Yorkville locations. “Food-portion control also is important.”
Healthy eating tips recommended by Ms. Snyder include:
“Research has shown that type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed in people at risk for the disease through lifestyle changes,” Dr. Stein said. According to the CDC, weight loss of 5 percent to 7 percent in overweight individuals and approximately 150 minutes of physical activity weekly can lower risk for the disease by as much as 60 percent.
Dreyer has resources available to help patients control and better manage their diabetes. These include the American Diabetes Association (ADA) Recognized Diabetes Self-Management Education program and the Health Management program. The ADA recognized Self-Management Education program is led by certified diabetes nurse educators and dietitians whose role is to assist patients in day-to-day management of diabetes. The program consists of a one-hour individual appointment with eight hours of group classes. During the individual appointment, educators will assess patients’ needs and help them set individual goals. During the group classes, educators work with patients to help them meet their goals. The Health Management program is comprised of trained clinical pharmacists whose role is to assist patients and their physicians in managing the medications used to treat diabetes and it’s associated conditions.
Dr. Adam Stein sees patients in the Endocrinology Department at Dreyer’s Oswego and West Aurora locations. Please call 630-859-6942 to schedule an appointment or visit dreyermed.com for more information.
Katherine Snyder, R.D., L.D., C.D.E., sees patients in the Education Department at Dreyer’s West Aurora and Yorkville locations. Please call 630-859-6898 to schedule an appointment or visit dreyermed.com for more information.